Prospect Heights police will install seven surveillance cameras outside apartment buildings on the east side of the city as a gang- and crime-fighting tool.
The city council Monday approved a request from Police Chief Jamie Dunne to pay for the $71,000 system by adding approximately $30,000 from the general fund to money acquired through drug arrests and previously approved for less-effective cameras. Xtivity Solutions of Elmhurst will provide and install the system.
The cameras will be at four apartment complexes in an area with Milwaukee Avenue on the east, Apple Drive on the south, Palatine Frontage Road on the north, and Plaza Drive on the west.
"I believe law-abiding citizens would have no objection to surveillance," said Dunne..
The city already has one camera near a park in the area that has "dramatically reduced problems," said the chief.
Authorities will use the cameras to collect clues after a crime has occurred, and they should discourage criminals from operating in the area, said Dunne.
"My goal is to bring a sense of safety to the people who are law-abiding and raising their children over there," he said. "And we will let those who are not leading a conforming lifestyle know that we are coming after them,"
Dunne said the cameras could help in cases such as one that occurred Friday. A 14-year-old with a police record was shot in the arm and refused to give police any information about who could have shot him or who might have witnessed the crime.
Aldermen made few comments, but Luis Mendez of the 1st Ward asked why a few other areas were not included in the surveillance.